Tuesday, July 27, 2004

It's Tisha B'Av afternoon, post-nap and pre-minchah. I'll try to jot down my impressions of two recent "group experiences" while they're fresh. I'm usually cynical about these sorts of things but I'm feeling sappy (probably some sugar imbalance brought on by the fast).

On Sunday evening I participated in the human chain from Azza to Yerushalayim. It was a logistic nightmare for the organizers but all I had to do was stand there. It was one of those wonderful Am Yisrael experiences where left and right, chiloni, haredi and dati stood together in common cause... Had you going there, did I? OK, I lied about left, hiloni and haredi. But still it was nice to see all the usual mitnachalim doing the mitnachel thing. Fresh air and sunshine -- perfect weather for standing on the side of the highway for two hours sucking up fumes. (I think that sappy feeling has worn off.) Anyway, I confess that at exactly 7:00, when we all held hands and sang Hatikvah and Ani Maamin, I FELT THE POWER. I really did. Just for a few seconds. But I definitely felt it.

After that I went to Sylvain Shalom's meeting against bringing Labor into the government. (Yes, I reveal here a dark side of my life.) He's just worried about his job (foreign minister) but at least some of the other 1000+ members of the Likud Central Committee there might have actually been worried about the country. The point was to give the Likud members of Knesset the courage to defy Sharon on this issue. It might even have worked. But no politics on Tisha B'Av (except a quick reminder that not all sinah is sinat chinam).

Last night the whole family went for eichah and kinos to Herodion, an ancient fortress near My Little Town, where Jewish fighters held out for a year after the Churban. From there they could see the Beis HaMikdash burn and from there we could see the lights of Yerushalayim. A few hundred people gathered on a dark mountain top in the midst of hostile neighbors on the night of Tisha B'Av. I think I might have FELT THE POWER again. But Treppenwitz will describe it much better than I can.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

So you spotted me there... ;-)

11:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just a quick note to say that I've enjoyed your blog so far. We don't agree on everything, but you seem to be as cynical as I am, so how bad can you be?
I was just wondering why in particular you are against the disengagement plan - Zionist, security or other reasoning?
R Brand

12:25 AM  
Blogger Ben said...

Thanks. It's security. I've briefly blogged this in the past (http://benchorin.blogspot.com/2004/04/visited-maaras-hamachpela-wednesday-to.html and http://benchorin.blogspot.com/2004/06/very-fine-hebrew-article-by-amnon.html) but I hope to devote a serious post to this soon.


12:52 AM  
Blogger MoChassid said...


Mamash enjoying...thanks for the email. Next time you're in town perhaps we can go to Prime Grill and you can explain your baseball statistic in terms that I can understand (like 1 + 1 = 2).

10:09 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

Prime Grill and baseball stats -- mamesh a gevald! I'm tempted to make a special trip just for that.


11:29 PM  

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